Record 382 million have diabetes
THE world is losing the battle against diabetes as the number of people estimated to be living with the disease soars to a new record of 382 million this year, medical experts said yesterday.
The vast majority have Type-2 diabetes - the kind linked to obesity and lack of exercise - and the epidemic is spreading as more people in the developing world adopt Western, urban lifestyles.
The latest estimate from the International Diabetes Federation is equivalent to a global prevalence rate of 8.4 per cent of the adult population and compares to 371 million cases last year.
"The battle to protect people from diabetes and its disabling, life-threatening complications is being lost," the federation said in the sixth edition of its Diabetes Atlas, noting that deaths from the disease were now running at 5.1 million a year or one every six seconds.
People with diabetes have inadequate blood-sugar control, which can lead to a range of dangerous complications, including damage to the eyes, kidneys and heart. If left untreated, it can result in premature death.